Pam Dawber (born October 18, 1951) is an American actress, known for her title roles as Mindy McConnell in the 1978–82 sitcom Mork & Mindy and as Samantha Russell in My Sister Sam (1986–88). Dawber has a four-octave soprano voice.
Life and career
Dawber was born in Detroit, Michigan, the daughter of Thelma M. (née Fisher) and Eugene E. Dawber, a commercial artist. She attended North Farmington High School and Oakland Community College. She began her career as a fashion model with Wilhelmina Models and went on to a career as an actress. From 1978 to 1982, she played one of the title roles in the ABC sitcom Mork & Mindy: Mindy McConnell, the comedic foil and eventual love interest for the extraterrestrial Mork from the planet "Ork", played by Robin Williams. The show was extremely popular in its debut season, when it averaged at #3 in the Nielsen ratings for the year.
Dawber got to use her four-octave soprano voice in a 1980s Los Angeles Civic Light Opera production of Gilbert & Sullivan's The Pirates of Penzance, based on the Joseph Papp/New York Shakespeare Festival production. Her role, as Mabel, had been played by Linda Ronstadt in the New York run of the show.
From 1986 to 1988, Dawber again had the title role in a TV series, playing Samantha Russell in the CBS sitcom My Sister Sam, co-starring Rebecca Schaeffer. Schaeffer was shot and killed by an obsessed fan in front of her apartment in 1989, which devastated Dawber.
Dawber is a national spokeswoman for Big Brothers Big Sisters of America.
She has been married to actor Mark Harmon since March 21, 1987. The couple appeared together in the film I'll Remember April, and have two sons: Sean Thomas Harmon (born April 25, 1988) and Ty Christian Harmon (born June 25, 1992).
Films & TV movies
- A Wedding (1978) - Tracy Farrell
- The Girl, the Gold Watch & Everything (1980) - Bonny Lee Beaumont
- Remembrance of Love (1982) - Marcy Rabin
- Through Naked Eyes (1983) - Anne Walsh
- Last of the Great Survivors (1984) - Laura Matthews
- Faerie Tale Theatre: The Little Mermaid
- This Wife for Hire (1985) - Marsha Harper
- Wild Horses (1985) - Daryl Reese
- American Geisha (1986) - Gillian Burke
- Quiet Victory: The Charlie Wedemeyer Story (1988) - Lucy Wedemeyer
- Do You Know the Muffin Man? (1989) - Kendra Dollison
- The Face of Fear (1990) - Connie Weaver
- Stay Tuned (1992) - Helen Knable
- The Man with Three Wives (1993) - Robyn
- Web of Deception (1994) - Ellen Benesch
- A Child's Cry for Help (1994) - Monica Shaw
- A Stranger to Love (1995) - Andie
- Trail of Tears (1999) - Cheryl Harris
- I'll Remember April (1999) - Barbara Cooper
- Don't Look Behind You (1999) - Liz Corrigan
- Christa McAuliffe: Reach for the Stars documentary (2006)
- Mork & Mindy (1978–82) - Mindy McConnell
- My Sister Sam (1986–88) - Samantha 'Sam' Russell
- Life... and Stuff (1997) - Ronnie Boswell
- Swan Lake (1981) - Princess Odette
- The Mork & Mindy/Laverne & Shirley with the Fonz Show (TV Series) (1982) - Mindy McConnell
- Nick and Noel (1993) (TV) - Leslie
- The Bears Who Saved Christmas (TV) (1994) - Mom
- 101 Dalmatians: The Series (TV Series) (1997) - Perdy